The National women's Volleyball team, Malkia Strikers, succumbed to hosts Argentina by straight sets (25-22, 25-21 and 25-13) in their opening match of the FIVB world Grand Prix Group Two match in Tucuman, Argentina Saturday morning.
Former captain Brackcides Agala contributed 17 points but even that could do very little to stop Argentina from completing a treble victory over David Lung'aho side whom they also beat in two test matches before the Saturday morning triumph.
Kenya's main aim is to fight relegation to Group Three and while a win against Dominican Republic and Bulgaria which will guarantee semi final berth is unlikely, they must try and win at least a match if they are to be considered for future participation at the most prestigious women's competition in the world.
Captain Mercy Moim, in a post match interview stressed that Kenya must post a better result in the coming matches.
"Tomorrow (next match) we're going to do it better because this was our first match," said Moim.
Kenya was the first owner of the game with Violet Makuto spiking home but Argentina reacted just in time with setter Yael Castiglione surprising its rival defense to turn the score around, 16-14. From then on, the home team grew on its game with Leticia Boscacci as equal top scorer and monopolised on Kenya's mistakes to enter to the final track with a good difference. Even Kenya complicated its rival at the end with Agala, a spike of Fresco finishing the set 25-22.
Argentina continued on a good level, but Agala and Captain Mercy Moim conduced her team to lead the board. On the other hand, Emilce Sosa took a big part on Argentina's recovery and lead the home team to a partial win, 16-13. Orduna's squad played faster and surprised Kenya, unable to stop the performance of its rival to take the second set 25-21.
Middle blocker Sosa opened the last episode with some impressive spikes that Argentina then completed with great team work. The difference was growing as the home team pushed by Fernandez and its star "Mimi" Sosa. With its block on the spotlight, Argentina closed the game 25-13.
Lung'aho said: " I think we did our best in the first and second set and we did it better than in the previous matches we played against them. We have to accept that we lost and focus on the following matches. The experience we're getting here is go."
Kenya next face Bulgaria (3-2 winners over Dominican Republic) on June 5.
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